BOSTON-L ArchivesArchiver > BOSTON > 2002-10 > 1034936453
From: "BBFFRRPP" <>
Subject: [BOSTON] .."The Temporary Home" ..on Chardon Street .. Thanks! (WATROUS, b1889)
Date: Fri, 18 Oct 2002 06:27:15 -0400
Thank you .. to the people who have responded with new information. One
person wrote to remind me of the name of the street .. which I couldn't
remember yesterday morning.
During some of the years "The Temporary Home" existed, it was on Chardon
Street. And, many people referred to it as "the Chardon Street Home."
"The Temporary Home" which I found out exists now is currently on .. New
Chardon Street in the Government Center. I was told that the original
Chardon Street no longer exists, but it might have been in the same vicinity
of the current New Chardon Street.
Someone else wrote to tell me about another "Home" in the same area, and
mentioned that the records were in the Archives Dept. at Simmons College.
I contacted that office at least once, and they responded that they do not
have any information on "The Temporary Home" which I am trying to find
Since I started this discussion, I decided to pull out an envelope of papers
I had received from "the State House." Someone there sent me Xerox
copies of a few pages of a booklet, called "A Directory of the Charitable
and Beneficent Organizations of Boston, ....." It mentions the Old Corner
Bookstore and the date, 1891.
The two "homes" I was remembering were described as follows:
"The Temporary Home (1862), Chardon St. Gives temporary shelter and food
to needy women and children, while endeavoring to procure employment or find
friends. The women do the work of the Home and wash for the Wayfarers'
Lodge. Foundlings brought by the police are received here. 53 beds.
Wayfarers' Lodge (1879), Hawkins St. 200 beds. One room is devoted to
men who are aged and infirm, or otherwise entitled to consideration. Each
man must take a warm bath on entering, and receives a wholesome breakfast
and supper. In return, he cuts and saws wood for one or two hours. Men
also earn their meals in the Lodge yard. The wood is used in public
buildings, sold to the public, and given to the poor...."
Now that I re-read this, I was reminded that .. my grandmother's "birth
information" seems to have disappeared into thin air ... I've checked
with a half-dozen different types of offices, and there is no birth record
for a baby girl, probably born on Feb. 1, 1889, with the name, Daisy WATROUS
(Middlesex County, MA)
(I heard that WATROUS is a shortened version of WATERHOUSE.)
Almost 2 years ago, I had my grandmother's Adoption Records opened. Even
though there were only a few pages of paper in the folder, I did find a few
facts which .. started my current search. And, one of the things which
was stated is that the baby, Daisy WATROUS, had her name changed at her
Adoption in March 1892. (In the book of Middlesex County name changes.)
... One of the "family stories" (many of which turn out to be .. not
true) was that she was named by the nurses in the hospital. I can
understand nurses giving a baby a first name, but I've never heard of an
abandoned baby being given a .. surname.
My imagination turned up an amusing thought .. that there was a Robert
WATROUS living in Boston in the 1880's, and he was a Piano Tuner.
In that capacity he probably had the opportunity to visit many homes in the
greater Boston area.
In this envelope of papers, I had put a copy of an e-mail from the BPL
Reference Dept. Some of the information they provided was:
Chardon Street Shelter, Temporary Home for Women and Children
41 New Chardon Street, Boston
"According to 'King's Dictionary of Boston,' the "shelter" (see above)
opened in 1877 at 327 Tremont Street .. as the Temporary Home for Working
"The new Chardon Street Shelter, operated by the DSS, is a facility for
women and children. It opened in 1877 on Tremont Street as the Temporary
Home for Working Women. The current shelter is at 41 New Chardon Street."
By re-reading the letter which came with the above papers, an Aide in the
Executive Dept. of the State House stated that, in addition to Simmons
College, there is another Archives Dept. which should be contacted: the
Special Collections of the Boston Healy Library at U.Mass./Boston.
Thank you for your time.
Betty (near Lowell, MA)
P.S. My grandmother, nee' Daisy WATROUS, 2/1/1889, remembered very little
of her youth, and some of what she did remember .. were "family stories"
told to her. Even though many of them turned out to be not true, some
of them ..may.. be true. One of the "stories" was that her birthmother
was killed in a train accident while traveling. Because the baby was
formally adopted in 1892, it could be that ..Miss DEXTER.. was killed in
1890 or 1891. Or, she could have been killed .. a few years later.